26 January 2014

There, They're or Their

Today we're talking grammar, specifically when to use your, you're, there, they're and their. This is largely because I saw a few posts on Facebook recently emphasising that point, but also because there's little I find more irritating when reading  a piece of writing than these words used inappropriately. 
'hey honey, can I borrow you're car?'
To be honest that was hard for me to write. These words have different meanings, which are easy to learn and so I feel it's unnecessary. 

Your is the word for describing the possessions of the person you're talking to.
 'hey honey, can I borrow your car?'
You're is used to describe the actions of the person you're talking to.
'You're doing that wrong.' 
 Their and they're follow the same pattern as your and you're. Their is to describe the possessions of another.
'Sarah and Lucy look gorgeous in their dresses.'
They're is to describe what they are doing. 
'Look at Sarah and Michael. They're so happy together.'
 This is because the use of the apostrophe in they're and you're has abbreviated these words from they are and you are. There on the other hand has nothing to do with people and instead describes a direction.
'Look over there!' 
 Using these words correctly is simple if you know what they mean, but sometimes the easiest way to check if you've got it right is to say it all out loud. 


25 January 2014


A month ago today I became engaged to Robert.
To tell the complete truth I remember little of the actual proposal beyond the facts, largely because it took place after midnight mass which ends around 1am, a time when me and awake do not mix. I can say he listens to me, because he asked me before telling anyone, something I have always wanted since we live in an era where I am not my dad's to give. I can say he knows me well, because he didn't choose a solitaire ring, but one with emeralds and a slightly elven look.
The past month has been one of the happiest of my life. I went dress shopping for my friend, who gets married in august, at the start of the year and since then my brain has gone into overdrive with ideas.


23 January 2014

The Light Fantastic – Terry Pratchett

The light fantastic picks up right where The Colour of Magic left off, with Rincewind, Twoflower and the Luggage falling off the edge of the world. Despite having read, and enjoyed, a number of Pratchett’s novels aimed at a younger audience whilst I was younger I’ll admit to being wary of his adult Discworld novels.

Largely I place the blame for this at the feet of my father, who read The Colour of Magic before any other Discworld books were released, and only managed the first half of Mort before giving up. Since this is the worse half and The Colour of Magic isn’t his best novel I can’t help feeling that my dad has not managed quite the true flavour of the Disc.

The Light Fantastic is necessary to end the frustration of countless thousands of readers who have made it to the end of The Colour of Magic with a litany of unanswered questions, not least of which is ‘you’re leaving it like that?!’ But at the same time, after Rincewind and Twoflower have been unexpectedly rescued from certain death it starts a little pointlessly.

The thing which I found most frustrating whilst reading this book, as with many of Pratchett’s other early novels, was a lack of direction. It is a reasonable length into the novel before Rincewind and Twoflower have anywhere they actually need to be, but I think that this is something Pratchett developed later in his career.

Rincewind and Twoflower themselves continue to be interesting characters, and I particularly liked Rincewinds conversations with the Octavo. However the scenes starring secondary characters were everything I love about a Pratchett novel.

These scenes, although largely character exploration, were building the Discworld. These scenes built detail upon tiny detail; they show why you will get more from the Disc if you read the books in order. They have characters and facts which you know will come into play again and again and again.

I really loved Cohen the Barbarian and Bethan. I’m not really sure if it’s because of these books, and I don’t think it is, but Cohen the Barbarian is a feature in our culture; as a young man. This is the first instance I’ve heard of anyone developing him as an old man.

What would a hero do with no teeth?

I like that Bethan could see past his age and still want the classic hero/damsel romance, even if it did weird me out a little. I also liked the trolls. I love them being rocks, it’s an interesting concept which recently made a reappearance in Disney’s Frozen, but usually you hear of them being bad guys who get turned to stone when the sun comes up and that’s the end of them.

My very favourite part of this novel would have to be when Rincewind saved the day. I couldn’t help feeling that he really got one up on the wizards in the Unseen University who were always looking down on him.

All in all a really good book.


21 January 2014

King of Thorns – Mark Lawrence

Image from Goodreads

If you’re reading a review about King of Thorns chances are you’ve already read Prince of Thorns. The thing about Prince of Thorns was Jorg Ancrath, main character of the book, who you couldn’t help feeling should be the antagonist, but who you fell for a little bit anyway. He’s so different than almost any other fantasy hero I’ve come across.

The thing about Jorg in this book is he’s lost some of that antagonism, and for most of the book you’re left wondering where it’s gone. Mark Lawrence does eventually reveal that, and it’s far from mundane, in fact it reinforces the slightly weird post dystopian world he’s created. I really like the world he’s developed, since I could almost see a way to it being created.

Jorg does a little bit of travelling in this book, I liked that. It gave us some new glimpses of the world he lives in. It’s an interesting world, full of twists and unexpected echoes. Fantastic.
Jorg also seemed to develop emotions in this book. I thought that was pretty cool, but I’m still unsure whether, for me, Jorg lost or gained something in the process. I think I’ll be waiting for the paperback release of Emperor of Thorns to make up my mind.

As with Prince of Thorns this book was split between two timelines which played off against one another perfectly. This time however there was a third thread intertwined in the form of Katherine’s diary entries. These entries had me questioning pretty much everything I knew about this story.

I put it to you that Mark Lawrence is a master of fiction. He writes stories unlike anything else I’ve ever read. He’s made me care about characters who should have been unlikeable. And he’s had me questioning everything the whole way through each book, until the end, where I find everything neatly laid out with the pieces before my eyes the entire time.

A great book. Well worth the wait and the read.